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Galatasaray boss up for Atlético challenge

"Atlético Madrid are the favourites, but favourites don't always win," said Galatasaray boss Hamza Hamzaoğlu, who hopes attack will prove the best form of defence.

Hamza Hamzaoğlu says Galatasaray will not sit back and defend
Hamza Hamzaoğlu says Galatasaray will not sit back and defend ©Getty Images
  • Hamza Hamzaoğlu promises positive approach from the hosts in Group C
  • "Favourites don't always win," maintains Galatasaray coach
  • Atlético have lost just once in their last six European away games
  • Arda Turan connection means visitors are well known in Turkey
  • Diego Simeone anticipates proactive Atleti display in Istanbul

Possible lineups
Galatasaray: Muslera; Carole, Hakan Balta, Semih Kaya, Sabri Sarıoğlu; José Rodríguez, Selçuk İnan, Sneijder, Yasin Öztekin; Podolski, Burak Yılmaz.
Out: Hamit Altıntop (knee), Aurelien Chedjou (back)

Atlético: Oblak; Juanfran, Giménez, Godín, Gámez; Oliver Torres, Tiago, Gabi, Koke; Griezmann, Fernando Torres.
Out: Filipe Luís (unspecified injury)

Hamza Hamzaoğlu, Galatasaray coach
Our aim is to move the ball quickly in our opponents' half and to keep up the pressure. That's why we create a lot of chances and give a few chances away too. If keep playing like this, we are sure that we'll get good results, and I can guarantee we will continue to play this way.

Atlético Madrid are the favourites, but favourites don't always win. We have been watching them over the last few years; there has been extra focus on them in Turkey because our national-team captain Arda Turan played there. I respect Diego Simeone whose successes in recent years have been exceptional.

Simeone hoping for strong start

Diego Simeone, Atlético coach
Every team plays in the Champions League with a different motivation to other games. It is a very important and difficult competition, and it is hard to ever say which team are favourites. In front of a crowd of 55,000 I don't think we can describe ourselves as favourites here.

Galatasaray have effective attacking weapons but we absolutely think we can take advantage of their weaknesses. In the first few minutes we will try to play aggressively, hard but fair. We will try to control the game.

Weekend results
Galatasaray 1-1 Mersin (Podolski 50; Welliton 49)
Galatasaray dropped points for the third time in four Süper Lig games this season, Lukas Podolski scoring his second of the campaign before Selçuk İnan was dismissed late on.

Atlético 1-2 Barcelona (Torres 51; Neymar 55, Messi 77)
Atlético took the lead through Fernando Torres – his first goal of 2015/16 – but ultimately lost to Barcelona for the fifth match in succession.

City guide: Istanbul

Form guide (all competitions, most recent first)*
Galatasaray: DWLD
Atlético: LWW

*This season only

Reporter's view: Çetin Cem Yılmaz
Atlético come to Istanbul as favourites, but Diego Simeone feels his side can handle the pressure at the Ali Sami Yen Spor Kompleksi. Galatasaray have had their problems domestically, winning only one of their four games, and Hamza Hamzaoğlu will need to sort out his defensive unit. He may use a strengthened midfield trio to stop Atléti's classy front line.

Did you know?
Galatasaray have played Atlético twice at home before – in the 2009/10 UEFA Cup round of 32 and the 1973/74 European Cup first round – but how did they fare? Find out this and more in our extensive match background.